Cottons Hall Hotel & Spa, Knutsford is a four star hotel in Cheshire, easily accessed from the M6, M56 and M60. For us, this is just a half hour drive from home so made the perfect destination for a night away.
Hotels for a family of five are hard to find
As a family of five, hotel stays can often be tricky and expensive involving interconnecting doors or multiple bedrooms and complex sleeping arrangements! Cottons Hall Hotel & Spa were able to book us into a family room which would sleep us all (I think it’s called a Junior Suite on their website!). The layout of the room in it’s normal state would offer a double bed with an adjoining, open plan lounge area. When set up for our family, the lounge area played host to a double sofa bed and a single pull out bed. As you can imagine, this took up most of the space available to us but meant we were all able to share one room. The double bed being in a slightly separate area meant that whilst we were all in the same room, we didn’t feel we were disturbing each other – which as any parent knows, is gold when it comes to sharing hotel rooms with children! Dave and I were able to lie in bed watching films on our tablets without keeping the kids awake.
Easter Afternoon Tea
During our stay at Cottons Hall Hotel & Spa, we enjoyed a special Easter themed afternoon tea. Now I’m a big lover of afternoon tea but I don’t think it’s something the children have had before which made it an extra treat!
Our afternoon tea was served on two traditional tiered stands. The first thing I always notice about an afternoon tea for two or more people is whether there’s enough of each cake for each person or if there is picking and choosing to be done. This Easter Afternoon Tea was a bit of both – we seemed to have been set up for two children, so the Easter biscuit and nests were in twos, but other things were in fives. Luckily the kids were able to come to an agreement between them about who would have what but it could easily have gone the other way. The sandwiches were delicious but not entirely family friendly – the traditional smoked salmon and cream cheese or egg sandwiches definitely weren’t a hit with our children, so they went hard on the ham sandwiches leaving Dave and I to enjoy the salmon and egg ones. We were so full from our afternoon tea that we actually couldn’t eat it all – this is frankly unheard of when it comes to afternoon tea! The staff were able to give us boxes to package up our leftovers to enjoy later on!
Being a family friendly hotel, and in fact a wedding venue, as well as a spa meant that the hotel was really busy with a variety of guests over the course of the weekend. I did find we were conscious of the spa guests who were also enjoying their lunch or afternoon tea at the same time – aware that they might not really appreciate an excitable family of five whilst they were trying to relax for the day and we were certainly aware of some of the wedding guests in the middle of the night who appeared to be having some problems with their room key and decided to have a huge row about it outside our room – however, despite this, we realised that our room was actually extremely quite and bar being woken up with a start in the middle of the night, we never heard a peep from anyone or anything else.
Cottons Hall Hotel & Spa pool facilities
To balance out the needs of the various types of guests making use of the facilities, the swimming pool is adults only for set periods during the middle of the day. What this does mean is that come 3pm when the pool and spa facilities are open to families, it does get quite busy and probably not entirely relaxing for guests who are there on a luxury spa day! Ben and Chloe really enjoyed relaxing in the whirlpool (something they’ve not really done before). We didn’t get chance to try the hot tub as it’s not suitable for children, and was also fairly busy. I did manage five minutes in the steam room which was lovely! We made use of the pool facilities on Saturday afternoon and then again after breakfast on Sunday morning.
Dinner at Cottons Hall Hotel & Spa
We booked our dinner relatively early on Saturday night – concious of not wanting to make the kids wait too late for dinner. As it was, I was still stuffed from my afternoon tea and really wasn’t all that hungry when we sat down to dinner! We were some of the first guests into the dining room – alongside some spa guests in dressing gowns which felt a little strange and made us super aware of keeping the kids quiet! Once the dining room had filled up a little we felt more relaxed!
We had a really lovely evening meal – the staff were attentive and helpful, the food was delicious (and definitely more fancy than we are used to eating in the company of our children!)
Although there was a kids’ cinema room with a film on, we decided we’d rather watch a film in our room as it meant Dave and I could relax too. We let the kids watch Britain’s Got Talent in bed before insisting on lights out!
Hotel breakfasts are always a highlight!
For Ben, the highlight of any hotel stay is his breakfast – this time round that consisted of crumpets and multiple waffles with honey on (I’m surprised he didn’t sink when he got in the pool after breakfast!).
Family Friendly Details
We had a really lovely stay at Cottons Hotel & Spa – the lovely touches like children’s dressing gowns, teddy bears and bedtime milk and cookies made us feel really welcome as a family – I feel like Cottons Hotel and Spa have got the balance right for a wide range of guest needs.
*We stayed at Cottons Hall Hotel & Spa free of charge for the purposes of review*